South African centre, Romé Dreyer, advancing for the SA netball team with captain Bongiwe Msomi in support, during their last 2018 Quad Series match against England in Melbourne on Sunday. Photo: Michael Bradley

MELBOURNE  Despite the South Africa netball team leading at every break against England in their final Quad Series game, the English Roses beat the Proteas 45-42 in Melbourne on Sunday.

South Africa at halftime were leading England by seven goals 27-20.

In the final quarter it was game on and both teams were level at 41-41 with four minutes left on the clock. England then took the lead for the first time since the first quarter and finally beat South Africa 45-42.

The Proteas’ shooting average was 79 percent compared to the 85 percent of England.

SA skipper Bongi Msomi said despite the loss she was pleased with her team’s efforts.

“Taking into account we have new inexperienced caps in our team and are missing some experienced players due to injury the Spar Proteas showed guts,” said Msomi.

“We also know we have depth in our team which lends well for the future. We should have finished the game off but credit to England for making the comeback they did. Now the SPAR Proteas need to work on consistency to prevent losses like this.”

SA coach Norma Plummer said she was extremely disappointed following the loss.

“We had that game. I was extremely disappointed in our attacking and shooters not going to the post after half time. We certainly had England having to change up their whole game. I thought our defence head was absolutely outstanding and credit to Rome Dreyer who did a very good job.

“I had to take Rome off to give her a break because the fitness levels at this level are on another level and I needed to give her that break in-between.

“Shadine van Der Merwe and Karla Pretorius were also outstanding. We actually had that game so yes we very disappointed. We let England in the door. England had to change up their whole team to get across the line which is a feather in the SPAR Proteas cap. Just sad it’s another loss we let slip.” 

 African News Agency (ANA)

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